Mineral exploration and mining near Mt. Hope dates back to the 1870s when prospectors discovered zinc-lead ores in scarn material at the base of Mt. Hope. This led to sporadic mining operations until the early 1970s.
Phillips Petroleum drilled for zinc and copper adjacent to Mt. Hope in the early 1970s and ASARCO and Gulf Petroleum continued studying the same minerals through the mid 1970s. The last hole drilled by Phillips resulted in the discovery of a significant deep molybdenum deposit west of the zinc mineralization.
Exxon Minerals explored Mt. Hope from 1978 to 1982, drilling 69 holes that helped to better define the molybdenum deposit at Mt. Hope. Exxon completed a pre-feasibility study in 1983, estimating reserves at 572 million tons with 0.085% moly, and a mine life of 58 years. Exxon completed a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) and held public hearings in 1985. Exxon drilled an additional 60 holes on the property between 1983 and 1988 before dropping its lease on the property.
Other mining companies reviewed the Mt. Hope project in the 1980s and 1990s, including Cyprus and Kennecott.
In 2004, the Mt. Hope project was optioned by Idaho General Mines (now General Moly), which utilized drilling and mineral modeling data from previous companies to develop its own Bankable Feasibility Study, which was initially published in 2007.
In 2012, the Company received its Record of Decision from the Bureau of Land Management and secured the remaining Nevada Division of Environmental Protection permits needed to construct and operate the Mt. Hope Project.